March 16, 2017
University of New England Vice President for Global Affairs and Communications Anouar Majid Ph.D., gave a lecture at the University of Maryland Baltimore County’s Drescher Center for the Humanities titled, “The Post-Andalusian Condition: Islam and the Rise of the West.”
In this lecture, Anouar Majid expanded Edward Said’s notion of Orientalism and extended it back to the Late Middle Ages, when the Andalusian order, characterized by a fragile coexistence among members of different religions, was upended by a crusading Christian spirit and the rise of a Western hegemonic worldview that allowed no room for alternatives. Such a world system forced Muslims and other non-Western traditions into a defensive mode, fighting back by deploying indigenous traditions. Even as European powers pursued their expansionist agenda in the name of freedom, Muslims fought for their independence by rallying their people against Western imperialism. As a result of this uneven struggle, Muslims found strength in orthodoxies that have only made their condition worse and continue to bedevil the world order today.
Anouar Majid is the director of the Center for Global Humanities, vice president for Global Affairs and Communications and professor of English at the University of New England and the founding director of the Tangier Global Forum in Morocco. He is the author of five critically acclaimed books on Islam and the West, including Unveiling Traditions (Duke University Press, 2000), Freedom and Orthodoxy (Stanford University Press, 2004), A Call for Heresy (University of Minnesota Press, 2007), We Are All Moors (University of Minnesota Press, 2009) and Islam and America (Rowman & Littlefield, 2012; 2015). Majid has given lectures in many countries and has appeared on American, Moroccan, French and Dutch television programs. He is a novelist, the author of Si Yussef, and is the editor of Tingis, a free online magazine dedicated to a new study of Islam and its history.
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It fosters creative thinking about the role of the humanities in public life, and through its programs, participates in the public conversation about the value of the humanities to our increasingly interconnected world.
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